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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 08/17/15

Guests: Tom Davis, Ann Gearan, Josh Barro, Zeke Miller, Kay Henderson

MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY, MSNBC: Now, it`s time for THE LAST WORD with Lawrence O`Donnell, good evening Lawrence. LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, HOST, THE LAST WORD: Hey Melissa, great to see you, thank you very much. Well, we learned this weekend how Donald Trump is prepping for the presidency. He does it by watching "Meet the Press" with Chuck Todd. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Donald Trump arrives for jury duty -- UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s a bit of a circus actually out here. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) justice will be served, you`re in good hands now -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People thought last week, that after the debate performance Trump would go away. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you batman? DONALD TRUMP, CHAIRMAN & PRESIDENT, THE TRUMP ORGANIZATIONS & FOUNDER, TRUMP ENTERTAINMENT RESORTS: I am batman. (LAUGHTER) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And you`re so silly. (LAUGHTER) TRUMP: You know, every time somebody says I made a mistake, they do the polls and my numbers go up. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is leading this recent "Fox News" poll, 25 percent - - UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The other leading Republican campaigns, they now believe Trump can win Iowa. TRUMP: Does anybody want to take a ride? (CHEERS) CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC: What should we take seriously? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Then you have to say Mr. Trump -- CHUCK TODD, MODERATOR, MEET THE PRESS: When was the last time America was great? Who was the worst before her then?You want to get rid of birthright citizenship? TRUMP: You have to get rid of it, yes -- UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Should end birth citizenship -- GOV. SCOTT WALKER (R), WISCONSIN: Yes, to me, it`s about enforcing the laws in this country -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Make it proud -- HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Most of the other candidates are just Trump without the pizzazz or the hair. (LAUGHTER) TRUMP: I`ve had a lot of fun, I`m leading in the polls -- my year, how are you? A year of me, taking this, because it`s my year! (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Trump, the insult candidate has called Chuck Todd a dummy, a moron. This is a quote, "one of the dumbest voices in politics", and recently, he said this to Bill O`Reilly. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BILL O`REILLY, FOX NEWS: Do you believe there`s an anti-conservative bias at "Nbc"? You`ve worked for them a long time. TRUMP: Absolutely, you have sleepy eyes Chuck Todd who does "MEET THE PRESS" which is failing in the ratings. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: So, what did Trump do this weekend? He did his longest interview of the campaign season so far on "Meet the Press" with Chuck Todd, where he told his fans who he taught to hate Chuck Todd, that he, Donald Trump, actually gets his military advice from Chuck Todd. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: Who do you talk to for military advice right now? TRUMP: Well, I watch the shows. I mean, I really see a lot of great -- you know, when you watch your show and all of the other shows and you have the generals. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: And when the interview was drawing to a close, there was this deeply confusing moment for Trump supporters. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: A lot more to get to, but actually, I`m going to have you back again. TRUMP: It was a great honor. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: It was a great honor. So Donald Trump who in January of this year said so many people have told me that I should host "Meet the Press", replace the moron who is now on. That same man, yesterday tells the world and Chuck Todd that it was a great honor to be on Chuck Todd`s show. If you`re looking for consistency, Trump is not your candidate as 75 percent of Republicans seem to realize. The "Fox News" poll released -- the new Fox News poll released today shows that Trump`s debate performance had no effect on his candidacy. But it did shift the ground underneath Trump with a 5 percent margin of error, it shows Ben Carson at 12 percent and Ted Cruz at 10 percent, Bush at 9 percent, Donald from 15 percent before the debate, Carly Fiorina jumped to 5 percent and John Kasich is at 4 from 3 pre-debate. Chuck Todd is the first person to figure out how to interview Donald Trump, and he may be the very first interviewer to not waste a single question on Trump`s poll numbers. Chuck used a couple of the questions that have been suggested on this program for Donald Trump, including a question about Trump`s campaign slogan. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: Your slogan, we`re going to hear a lot today at the fair, "we`re going to make America great again". When was -- TRUMP: That`s all good -- TODD: When was the last time America was great? TRUMP: I would say during the administration of Ronald Reagan, you felt proud to be an American, you felt really proud. I don`t think since then to any great extent people were proud. TODD: Then let me ask you this, I`m not trying to play a little got you here. But in 1987, you took out a full-page ad, this is during the Reagan administration and you said this to the American people. "For decades, Japan and other nations have been taking advantage of the United States -- on message by the way, consistent. The world is laughing at America`s politicians as we protect ships we don`t own, carrying oil we don`t need, destined for allies who won`t help." Message-wise, very consistent. But this -- TRUMP: From day one, including during the -- TODD: Let`s -- TRUMP: Reagan -- TODD: Let`s -- I was just going to say -- TRUMP: NAFTA -- TODD: Let`s not let our great country be laughed at any more. TRUMP: Right -- TODD: If that`s the last time America was great again, you didn`t think America -- TRUMP: No -- TODD: Was great then -- TRUMP: No, I thought America was excellent. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: America was excellent. And there was the question about Hillary Clinton that I`ve been urging interviewers to ask. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: You`ve regularly -- TRUMP: Winning -- TODD: Called her the worst Secretary of State. TRUMP: I think she`s -- TODD: Thought if they -- TRUMP: The worst -- TODD: If they -- TRUMP: Secretary of State in the history of our country. Look what happened -- TODD: Mistake it will -- TRUMP: During her reign -- TODD: It begs the question, I`m a history buff, who was the worst before her then in your mind? TRUMP: Well, I`ll tell you who`s the worst after her, Kerry. Because -- TODD: Right -- TRUMP: Of what -- TODD: Who is -- TRUMP: I mean, look -- TODD: Who do you believe is the worst -- TRUMP: Oh, yes, I don`t want to get into names -- TODD: Oh, no, because -- TRUMP: You know, what I`m insulting -- Chuck, I`m insulting so many people, I don`t want to insult people, I want to be nice to people -- TODD: I understand it -- (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: And so Trump, the insult candidate suddenly wants to be nice to people. So we left that interview without any evidence that Donald Trump knows any of the names of any of the Secretary of State before Hillary Clinton. Joining us now, Zeke Miller, political reporter for "Time Magazine", Josh Barro, reporter for the "New York Times" and an Msnbc contributor, Ann Gearan, political correspondent for "The Washington Post". Former Republican Congressman from Virginia, Tom Davis. Tom Davis, the poll numbers are interesting with Trump. He seems to be holding pretty solidly there at about 25 percent of Republicans responding in these polls. But we`ve seen Herman Cain, last time around at 30 percent, Rick Perry had a spot last time around where he was at 38 percent. TOM DAVIS, FORMER CONGRESSMAN: Right -- O`DONNELL: Trump does not seem to be moving up. What do you make of that? DAVIS: Well, I think he`s flavor du jour, you know, he`s got to remember, this is a marathon, this is not a sprint. Now, he`s out in front right now, he`s the new-new thing, but we`ll see how well he wears down the road. I think given the inconsistencies and the fact that a lot of his opponents haven`t really opened up on him yet, he`s kind of a -- but a high watermark. But we`ll see. I mean, you learn something every week. You think maybe he`ll drop and you know, he`s kept that percent. So, he`s the current frontrunner and there is -- you know, among Republicans, a lot of angst out there. What I would call a lot of anti-establishment feeling, and he seems to be capturing that in a bottle right now. O`DONNELL: Just full disclosure here, Chuck Todd and I had no communication before the interview. And, you know, those questions were pretty good and obvious questions to ask. DAVIS: Yes -- O`DONNELL: He didn`t need my suggestion for them. Let`s look at some of Chuck`s great questions that provoked answers, including Donald Trump`s plan for defeating ISIS. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: ISIS is taking over a lot of the oil in certain areas of Iraq. And I say you take away their wealth, you go and knock the hell out of the oil, take back the oil, we take over the oil which we should have done in the first place. TODD: It`s -- TRUMP: And -- TODD: Going to take ground troops. TRUMP: If you -- it`s OK -- TODD: What you`re talking about -- TRUMP: Yes -- TODD: Is ground troops. TRUMP: It`s OK -- TODD: Maybe 25,000 -- TRUMP: We`re going to circle it -- TODD: I`ll make -- TRUMP: We`re going to circle it -- (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Ann Gearan, one of the great things Chuck, I think realized he had to do in the middle of the Trump answers is, because the Trump answers can veer off wildly in any direction, Chuck actually had to grab his words and translate them into -- so you`re going to need ground troops, to which we get an OK. And so there we have that announcement via Chuck Todd that Donald Trump is all for sending in ground troops to get that oil. ANN GEARAN, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, THE WASHINGTON POST: Right, I mean, now it actually is Donald Trump putting some specifics to a rather vague statement that actually sounds pretty good, right? Yes, sure, like let`s cut off ISIS` access to oil. That sounds like an excellent idea. And in truth, it`s part of the theory of what the Obama administration is trying to do right now without great success. But as Chuck Todd pointed out, to actually make that happen, to ensure that, that those forces could not -- I mean, the ISIS forces could not actually control individual oil wells, it requires encircling those oil wells with somebody else, with something else. And that can`t simply be done from the air. And so you had Donald Trump who is no dummy, actually recognizing that, yes, in truth, what he had just said means what Chuck Todd said it said. O`DONNELL: And we also got -- thanks to Chuck, this fascinating response about the membership of NATO. This is one of the strangest things in the whole interview, this quick exchange about Ukraine joining NATO. Let`s look at this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: So you wouldn`t allow Ukraine into NATO. TRUMP: I would not -- I would not care that much to be honest with you, whether it goes in or doesn`t go in, I wouldn`t care. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: So Josh Barro, Donald Trump would be the first president in history who officially does not care who is a member of NATO. JOSH BARRO, NEW YORK TIMES: This is such a strange answer. I think it does not occur to Donald Trump that whether a country is in NATO or not means the difference between whether or not we`re promising to go to war with Russia if Russia invades that country. If we let Ukraine into NATO, that means if Russia invades Ukraine, we have a treaty obligation to go and defend Ukraine. So either he doesn`t care whether we get in the land or in Europe with Russia. Or he doesn`t know that that`s the implication of NATO membership. But I thought there was something very odd about this interview broadly. Which -- it`s a long interview, it`s like a 37 -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- BARRO: Minute interview. Watching it -- O`DONNELL: By the way -- BARRO: In spite -- O`DONNELL: Not all of it was shown -- BARRO: Right -- O`DONNELL: Could fit into "Meet the Press" and some of what we`re showing you didn`t make it on the air. BARRO: Yes, and in spite of myself, I found myself liking Donald Trump in this interview. No, I mean, objectively, Donald Trump is kind of obviously awful. This interview shows him to be ill-informed, his answers about policy are incoherent -- O`DONNELL: We`re now learning more about you than Donald Trump -- BARRO: Well -- O`DONNELL: OK -- BARRO: No -- O`DONNELL: Be careful where you go with it -- BARRO: I actually did -- I`ve -- because I didn`t under -- it`s -- but part of the -- part of what I think is the magic of Donald Trump and what people have not been able to understand, you know, how can he survive the awful things he says about Mexicans and John McCain and women and everything else. There is something about the way Donald Trump carries himself where people don`t take it too seriously when he insults you. I think he can go out and say that Chuck Todd is a dummy and his ratings suck and then come on his show eight months later and say it`s such an honor to be there. And it doesn`t sound weird or disingenuous -- O`DONNELL: Right -- BARRO: Coming from Donald Trump in the way it would from anybody else. He has a very compelling personality, you know, I`m not saying he should be president, but I think that strength of personality helps to explain how he`s managed to stay at the top of the polls for so many weeks. Tom is right that this is a marathon, not a sprint, but he`s getting far north into this, and he`s kind of winning it like a marathon. O`DONNELL: But Zeke, he is kind of the Don Rickles of the campaign. Everybody knew when Don Rickles was making jokes about his friends that he didn`t think his friends were actually idiots. When he would come on and call David Letterman an idiot, we understood he doesn`t mean he`s an idiot. Which would suggest that the 25 percent who are saying yes when asked about Donald Trump in the polls -- or like Josh says, obviously, they just don`t actually believe the words he says. Like they don`t believe what he was saying about Chuck Todd and stuff, so there`s no inconsistency when he appears on Chuck`s show. ZEKE MILLER, POLITICAL REPORTER, TIME MAGAZINE: I mean, that`s actually right. And even among that 25 percent, you know, you know, you talk to them on the road, you call them back in the surveys, and they`ll tell you that, you know, they just like the idea of Donald Trump being where he is in this race right now because he`s fulfilling their frustrations with the -- with the Republican establishment. That they just want to prolong this, cause some pain for the Republican Party, their own party just because they`re so frustrated with it, and we saw this on the ground in Iowa this weekend. Trump being mobbed by 1,500 people at point, just a crush of people at Illinois, the Iowa State Fair and they were cat-calling, hey, Trump, go Trump, love you, Donald. And then you talk around, you know, there`s a whole bunch of reporters there -- would go and ask, so are you Donald Trump`s supporter? Do you like Donald Trump? Like, no, well, this is just what you do. O`DONNELL: You were there actually asking -- MILLER: Yes, I was down there, yes, this -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- MILLER: Is what you do -- O`DONNELL: And so you`d ask them after they cheered for him -- MILLER: Exactly -- O`DONNELL: And they say? MILLER: This is just what you do around Donald Trump. (LAUGHTER) O`DONNELL: Yes -- MILLER: And it is amazing, it was amazing -- it seems like everyone is, you know, is captivated by this, you know, by his personality, his ability to get everybody sort of riled up about his own candidacy. Because everyone is in on this joke, but it`s not really a joke anymore, it`s now -- you know, it`s something of a movement, they -- sort of a living, walking parody of our political process. O`DONNELL: All right, we`re going to have to take a quick break here, we`re going to come back with more of this. We`ll also have some of the other candidates, Republican candidates who are working in Trump`s shadow, trying to figure out a way to get back in the spotlight. And on the Democrat side, Hillary Clinton makes a joke about her e-mails, Bernie Sanders still trying to figure out how his campaign should be dealing with Black Lives Matter Movement. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) (CROSSTALK) TRUMP: Thank you. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Reporters shouted questions at Donald Trump as he arrived for jury duty at lower Manhattan today. Trump didn`t really answer any of the questions, much like his answer to this question that Chuck Todd delivered on "Meet the Press". (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: A quick Facebook question, Michael Martinez(ph), "as residents of the District of Columbia currently pay federal taxes but have only a none voting delegate and house of Representatives. No representation in the Senate, should that policy continue as should D.C. become a state? Should it have -- not have to pay taxes? Should it be more like treated like Puerto -- TRUMP: Well -- TODD: Rico -- TRUMP: Base, I have a -- TODD: A state -- TRUMP: Conflict of interest because I`m building the greatest -- you know, I`m building at the old post office, I think what will be maybe one of the great hotels -- TODD: So, I`ve heard -- TRUMP: In the world. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: And so we have a great follow-up question tonight, it comes from Nicole, New York, who tweeted: "Why does your D.C. hotel exempt you from commenting on D.C. representation? You aren`t shy about commenting on New York issues or any other issues in any other state anywhere for that matter where he has all sorts of business interest." Keep sending us your questions for Trump. You saw Chuck Todd used a couple of them this weekend, who knows where they`re going to be used next. We will read your questions for Trump here, the good ones and we will be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: This weekend, Donald Trump made his first appearance on "Meet the Press" in 16 years. The last time he was on "Meet the Press", it was to explain why he was quitting the Republican Party. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Donald Trump, welcome to "Meet the Press". TRUMP: Oh, thank you very much, Ted. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are a registered Republican. TRUMP: Correct. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is a form that is being filed Monday, tomorrow, with the board of elections which says what? TRUMP: Well, it says that I am joining as of Monday the Reform Party, which in New York is the Independence Party and I look forward to doing so. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why are you joining the Reform Party? TRUMP: Well, for one thing, I really believe the Republicans are just too crazy right, I mean just what`s going on is just nuts. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Tom Davis, how many times does a guy have to quit your party before he`s not taken seriously by Republican voters? DAVIS: You asking me? O`DONNELL: Yes -- DAVIS: But Larry, but Winston Churchill changed parties several times -- (LAUGHTER) But I think Donald Trump has been given a pass on all of this. O`DONNELL: Yes -- DAVIS: He has -- his philosophy has obviously evolved overtime and then re-evolved again. And I think at this point, the voters that are supporting him are more interested in just showing their anti-establishment bona fides that he seems to show them. And he is speaking out against them and they`re really not at the policy stage yet. I will tell you this. You get closer to the elections, closer to the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary, the focus of voters becomes much more different. And the nuances and all this becomes more relevant. Right now it`s kind of celebrity, real TV. O`DONNELL: And Chuck Todd reached back to what only in Trump world remains an unsolved mystery, and that is, where President Obama was born. Let`s listen to that. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TODD: Do you believe President Obama is a citizen who was born in the United States? TRUMP: Well, I don`t like talking about it anymore. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Ann Gearan, that was it, he doesn`t like talking about it anymore and one of the principles of Trumpism is never back down, except every once in a while he does, he waffles and shifts a little bit. But I think on the big pillars of ideas that he`s identified with, like the birth certificate, his rule is, I can never show any glimpse of reality about that. GEARAN: Well, right, I mean, he`s excellent at changing the subject and that`s actually what we`re starting to see happen now on the trail as he -- I mean, no one expected, I`m sure at least about him, to be the kind of phenomenon he is this long into the race. And now there is a lot more pressure on him to be specific. To do a 35- minute interview with "Meet the Press", to, you know, spend a long time at the Iowa State Fair and take questions. Although, he -- I will note that he did not come to the "Des Moines Register" soapbox nor did Hillary Clinton and just about every other candidate who has gone through the fair this week has done so. But nonetheless, he`s had great exposure over the last few days, and he`s been pressured to get more specific. And that will only continue and it will be harder and harder for him to change the subject. O`DONNELL: In his "Meet the Press" interview, Donald Trump predicted nothing less than nuclear holocaust as a result of President Obama`s Iran deal, let`s listen to that. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: They`re going to have nuclear weapons, they are going to take over parts of the world that you wouldn`t believe, and I think it`s going to lead to nuclear holocaust. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: OK, so that`s very clear. Nuclear holocaust and then within the same answer, he added this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: I`ve heard a lot of people say we`re going to rip up the deal. It`s very tough to do when you say rip up the deal, because I`m a deal person -- because I will police that deal. You know, I would police that contract so tough that they don`t have a chance, as bad as the contract is, I will be so tough on that contract. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Josh Barro, the guy who just said it`s going to lead to nuclear holocaust says he will actually make that deal work. BARRO: Well, so the remarkable thing about this answer is, this was actually one of the substantively best answers that Trump gave in the interview. Now, that partly reflects the poor substance in -- O`DONNELL: Which part, the nuclear holocaust part or I will make the deal work? BARRO: The part where he understands that the question of whether we should make the Iran deal today is different from the question of what we should do about the Iran deal 18 months from now if he`s president, given that it`s already been made. He goes on and says -- sort of basically say, look, you know, once you`ve made the deal, you`ve released the money to Iran, the deal is in place, you can`t just put toothpaste back in the tube and get the international sanctions back together. And he`s basically saying, look, I have to play the cards that I have, I wouldn`t have made this deal, but given that the deal would have been made, I`m going to have to work with them. He talks about, you know, in his business career, he`s gotten bad deals that people negotiated before he bought into something. And you have to work within that deal. Jeb Bush is the one other candidate in the Republican field who is not into this, and that he`s been very critical of the Iran deal but hasn`t been willing to say, rip it up on day one, because it recognizes that fact on the ground that this deal is not just between the U.S. and Iran. It`s the U.S. and Iran and a lot of other world powers that we can`t just rip back with us 18 months from now because of a partisan election in the United States. So, I thought, you know, not all of this answer was good, I think nuclear holocaust is a substantively incorrect thing to say as a -- as a consequence of the Iran deal. But I think we`ve seen this in a number of the places where Trump talked about policy. He understands that on the ground situations actually matter for figuring out what the correct policy choice is. It`s not just you look into your ideology, figure out what the Republican rule book says you should do and then do that. He says, well, look at the facts and circumstances and do a different thing maybe today than we would do tomorrow depending on what the circumstances are. It`s actually a nice lack of absolutism. Now, maybe that`s just because he`s incapable of absolutes and changes his mind all the time. But I think in a way, it`s a refreshing shift from the incredible ideological rigidity of the Republican primary. O`DONNELL: Zeke Miller, I think in these interviews we`re always looking for those hooks, those things that Trump was leaving out there, that the Jeb Bush Super PAC and others will use to crush him if they have to, a couple of months from now with TV advertising. It seems like this seemed to be -- we had a bunch of them. MILLER: Yes, I mean, you have a few of them, I mean, saying that he got his foreign policy advice from -- but -- from "Meet the Press" and certainly he`s very high on the list. You`re not been able to manned the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will be up there not standing by Ukraine, his answer on Planned Parenthood. Again, make matters no -- sort of from the left of where the mainstream Republican Party is, in fact, last week on Sean Hannity, he only seemed to be making the case -- the Democratic case for continuing to fund Planned Parenthood. Hitting Jeb Bush for saying he would cut funding for women`s health meant little -- hinders, you know, what Jeb Bush said he misspoke. And so, that`s a really -- you know, interesting controversies he`s giving them all a hook to work with. O`DONNELL: All right, we got another quick break, when we come back, Republicans reacting to Donald Trump`s immigration plan. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: Most of the presidential candidates were in Des Moines over the weekend for the Iowa State Fair. Scott Walker, Lindsey Graham and Carly Fiorina continued campaigning there today where the issue of the day became Donald Trump`s immigration plan which the Trump campaign released yesterday. The Trump plan continues to insist that Mexico would pay for an impenetrable 2,000-mile wall along the southern border. The Trump plan would also call for the largest police action in American history, rounding up over 11 million undocumented immigrants and deporting them. The Trump plan would do this by increasing the number of immigration and customs enforcement officers from five thousand to fifteen thousand. And those fifteen thousand officers would then find every one of those over 11 million undocumented immigrants in all 50 states, apprehend them and deport them. Fifteen thousand just as a frame of statistical reference is less than half the size of the New York City Police Department. The Trump plan would end the automatic grant of citizenship to all children born in the United States, ending birth right citizenship would require a constitutional amendment, which the Trump plan does not acknowledge. Today in Iowa, Scott Walker, who used to favor a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants tried to sound as much like Donald Trump as possible. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) KASIE HUNT, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: We should end birthright citizenship? SCOTT WALKER, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yes, to me, it is about enforcing the laws in this country. And, I have been very clear, I think you enforce the laws, and I think it is important to send a message that we are going to enforce the law, no matter how people come here. We need to uphold the laws. HUNT: And you should deport the children of undocumented immigrants or not citizens? WALKER: I did not say that. I said we need to enforce the law, which to me s focusing on E-Verify, (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Republican Presidential Lindsey Graham said this about the Trump plan. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) LINDSEY GRAHAM, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is a giant step backward for the Republican Party. We are having a problem with Hispanics and women. We are digging a big hole. Not only is this plan worse than other people have talked about. It is absolutely going to receive no support in the senate or the house from democrats and most republicans. Giant step backwards. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now from the Iowa State Fair is O. Kay Henderson, News Director for Radio Iowa. Kay, you have survived that weekend out there with all the candidates. Is immigration a top issue for caucus goers there? O. KAY HENDERSON, NEWS DIRECTOR FOR RADIO IOWA: It is for a certain segment of the party. You know that Congressman Steve King represents a good chunk of Western Iowa here. This is a big issue for him. All of the candidates on the republican side have been going to his events and trying to catch his ear, and if you will, catch his eye. And, so, it has been a big issue on the campaign trail. One of the really interesting things that happened today about not only what Scott Walker said about birthright citizenship, but what Lindsey Graham also said. He said, once you do secure the border several years on down the road, we can talk about that issue, but we cannot talk about it now until these other issues, regarding the immigration reform package, that he worked on in the senate, are addressed. O`DONNELL: Tom Davis, strategically, for the Republican Party, is Lindsey Graham right or wrong about this is a setback for the Republican Party to go on the Trump direction? TOM DAVIS, FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN (R-VA): Well, if you adapt the trump direction, it is not going to help them with Hispanic voters, which are the largest, you know, fastest growing group in the electorate. And, I think republicans make a mistake if they try to outtrump, Trump on this issue. Having said that, there are number of things that Trump talked about that probably scored with the majority of voters and certainly with the vast majority primary voters. But republicans, I think, have got to go after that Hispanic vote in the general election. And, I think given the tone of Donald Trump`s remarks and some of the substance of that at this point, if you follow that, you are going to end up reducing the percent we get. We cannot afford to do that. O`DONNELL: So, Tom Davis, your advice to republican candidates would be keep an eye on the general election, because Donald Trump is not going to be in the general election. And, if you are on that ticket, you are going to need to appeal to precisely the voters Donald Trump is alienating right now. DAVIS: Well, that is right. You do not have to throw away everything Trump has said, because some of the things he said resonate with the majority of Americans. O`DONNELL: Which things do you think the republican nominee could advocate? DAVIS: Well, everybody wants that, you know, you talk about the fence. You know, you can get through stronger border protections. Actually, the birthright issue, when you look at the polling on that, even though it takes a constitutional amendment does not have the overwhelming support, but it is probably got majority support, which is why Lindsey Graham says let us talk about this down the line. But some of the other issues about deporting people, that is just not going anywhere, I think, with the general electorate. And, with Hispanics, that will drive turnout against the republicans. You need to be very careful on that because I think they have some issues that appeal to them on other grounds, but this is the fastest growing group in the electorate. O`DONNELL: Kay Henderson, who are the -- outside of Trump, I think is the way, we have to phrase this. Who are the big stars out there at the state farm -- state fair? HENDERSON: At the state fair? O`DONNELL: Yes. HENDERSON: I do not think anybody could compete with Donald Trump. Bernie Sanders even acknowledged that Trump was flying over the fairgrounds during his own speech. One of the big stars right now actually is Carrie Underwood, and there is a huge crowd cheering, not this conversation, but they are cheering her in the grandstand here. The other big stars here of course were Hillary Clinton. She had a smaller contingent, obviously, restricted by secret service, how she could interact with folks. I think what will be interesting to see tomorrow is how Marco Rubio draw the crowd here. Everywhere he goes in Iowa, although he does not do it very much, he draws enthusiastic crowds. He has not invested any campaign time here. It will be interesting to see what he does here to present himself to Iowa voters tomorrow. O`DONNELL: Zeke Miller, Iowa, last time Rick Santorum won it. It has this record of producing some irrelevant results, ultimately for who is going to end up in the general election. Are they at risk of that now? ZEKE MILLER, "TIME MAGAZINE" POLITICAL REPORTER: They certainly are. That is something they are very worried about. There were discussions a couple years ago about potentially even stripping Iowa of its First-In-The-Nation caucus status, build New Hampshire Maximis. Iowa picks corn. New Hampshire picks presidents. In the past couple of cycles, that has been accurate. O`DONNELL: Yes. MILLER: So, that is really a challenge for Iowa voters. It is a challenge for the Iowan Republican Party to show them -- to prove really that their judgment actually matters. That it is sound, that it is in line, that it is a proper barometer for the rest of the party. What it certainly does, it does not pick a president, it does pick the conservative alternative to the establishment candidate, whether that person will win the nomination or not. So, that is how you elevated Rick Santorum to run against Mitt Romney, that both finished -- Rick Santorum won the night of the caucuses in 2012. He certainly would have edged out the Newt Gingrich rise in South Carolina. So, that certainly a big point. It narrows down the field. This time around, it will narrow down the fields of the Bobby Jindals, Mike Huckabees, the Ted Cruzes, the Rick Santorums, Ben Carsons. One, maybe two of them will have a pathway out. And, that will help narrow down the field from 17 right now. O`DONNELL: And, Anne Gearan, in the past, everyone wants to be a republican candidate who would say, "I am not even going to try to compete in Iowa in effect, because they are just too right wing out there." And, that candidate would always try to be make it up in New Hampshire. But, they are all jumping in Iowa this year. ANNE GEARAN, "THE WASHINGTON POST" NATIONAL POLITICS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean I think everybody learned some lesson from Hillary Clinton last time, right? I mean Iowa is a forcing event on both sides, maybe more so even for the republicans. But, certainly her strategy of -- I mean she did not skip Iowa, it is called the skip Iowa strategy, but she did not skip Iowa. She just sort of went lighter on Iowa, than in hindsight she needed to. And, she is going heavy in Iowa this time, and so are all the republicans. O`DONNELL: Kay Henderson and Tom Davis, thanks for joining us tonight. DAVIS: Thank you. O`DONNELL: Up next. Civil rights leader, Julian Bond on "Meet The Press" in 1966. (MUSIC PLAYING) (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: President Obama issued this statement in reaction to the death of Julian Bond this weekend. "Julian bond was a hero, and I am privileged to say a friend. Justice and equality was the mission that spanned his life from his leadership of the student non-violent coordinating committee to his founding roll with the southern poverty law center to his pioneering service in the Georgia legislature and the steady hand at the helm of the NAACP. Michelle and I have benefitted from his example, his counsel and his friendship, and we offer our prayers and sympathies to his wife, Pamela, and his children. Julian Bond, helped changed this country for the better. And, what better way to be remembered than that. Here is Julian Bond on "Meet The Press" in 1966, when he was 26 years old. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HERBERT KAPLOW, MEET THE PRESS COMMENTATOR: Well, let me ask you, how else do you equate civil rights with the Vietnam? A lot of the other civil rights groups, for instance, the head of the Atlanta chapter of NAACP says, you should not equate the two. JULIAN BOND, CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER: Well I equate it, and I think the opposition to the war in Vietnam in this country, among a great many people, is moral opposition. That it is not political opposition. It is opposition of people who feel that war is wrong. It is opposition of people who feel that, that particular war is wrong on a moral ground. And, I think that is the same sort of opposition that the civil rights movement has been engaged in against segregation. It has been moral opposition to segregation as well as political and physical opposition to segregation. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Julian Bond was 75 years old. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: An informal straw poll at the Iowa State Fair shows Bernie Sanders with a small lead over Hillary Clinton. The poll organized by the Iowa Secretary of State, Paul Pate, shows Bernie Sanders at 48 percent. Hillary Clinton at 47 percent. Martin O`Malley down to 4. Lincoln Chafee and Jim Webb at 1. On the republican side, that same poll shows Donald Trump at 29. Ben Carson at 20. Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina at 7. Marco Rubio and Scott Walker at 6 percent. Jeb Bush at 5. Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal and Rand Paul at 4 percent, and John Kasich all the way down to 2. And, in the international poll, released yesterday by Fox News, shows Hillary Clinton at 49 percent. Bernie Sandes at 30 percent. Joe Biden at 10 percent. Jim Webb and Martin O`Malley at 1 percent. In the two weeks since the last Fox News Poll was conducted, Bernie Sanders has jumped 8 percentage points. Back with us, Zeke Miller, Josh Barro and Anne Gearan. Ann, this straw poll was in Iow, I am informed by Zeke Nur, who was there was a terribly informal poll. You could whack up and respond to that poll as often as you wanted to. And, so, we are going to struggle to apply any kind of scientific credibility to it. But, in spirit, it is not that different from the Iowa caucuses. GEARAN: Yes. I mean it is also sort of, you know, I think it is a bit of fun for people who are at the fair to feel like they have something in the moment to participate in. I would not set a great deal of store by it. The Fox News Poll out yesterday, though, you know, had some pretty interesting numbers, certainly on the democratic side. It shows, you know, Sanders still running strong and Biden, who has not obviously said that he, that he is running yet, you know, marking in double digits. And, some pretty significant numbers on the republican side as well, Jeb Bush following to single digits, primarily. O`DONNELL: Let us listen to what Bernie Sanders said on "Meet The Press" yesterday about the Black Lives Matter. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CHUCK TODD, NBC NEWS POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Buzzfeed has an article out this morning. Headline is this, "Sanders campaign reaches out to Black Lives Matter Activists. Quote, I apologize it took our campaign so long." Tell me more about it. BERNIE SANDERS, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, that was sent out by a staffer, not by me. TODD: I understand that, but you said a staffer put it out. You felt an apology was necessary? SANDERS: No. I do not. I think we are going to be working with all groups. This was sent out without my knowledge. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Zeke Miller, how is Bernie Sanders handling this? MILLER: That quote was, certainly, not the quote he wanted to -- he wanted out there that he wanted to be replayed on the show right now. He has for the past month or so now been struggling how to show the Black Lives Matter Movement that he understands their issues, that he is responding to them, and he has done fairly well with that on the stump. You know, over the weekend in Iowa -- In Dubuque, he had this town hall where he spoke very passionately about the issues, in a sort of tying in his own personal story. And, that was the type of thing that he needs to get out there. At the same time, here, not refusing to or being unable to admit that maybe he was a little late to this. Even if he personally feels that he was not too late to it, just acknowledging what the Black Lives Matter Movement wants to hear, is that they feel that the politicians have generally been slow to address the issues of concern to them. That they have been deaf to their issues over the years. And, even if you do not believe it fully, just do not go out and give them a sound bite that they can turn around and then only re-enforces the problem, makes -- O`DONNELL: Well, I think there is a softer way of saying similar things to what Bernie is saying. And, Josh, he has just got one of those tones that sounds gruff to people. And -- and, but, what that campaign has to recognize, and they do, obviously, is that one of the big buffers between them -- the Sanders campaign and the Clinton campaign in those polls is the African-American vote. JOSH BARRO, "THE NEW YORK TIMES" JOURNALIST: Well, I think Bernie sanders deeply believes that economic and equality and the consolidation of power among the wealthy that is getting wealthier and wealthier is the key issue of our time. And, if that is the ball game and everything else is sort of secondary to it. O`DONNELL: And, he believes that is a crucially important issue for the future of African-Americans. BARROW: Right, but so I think there are a lot of voters who do not see that as the most important issue when they go in and vote. And, they may agree with Bernie Sanders substantively on both what should be done about economic matters and about what should be done on issues of sight civil rights. I mean it is not that they are finding that Bernie Sanders is failing to check issue boxes, taking the wrong positions on things. But, he is not good at talking to people and basically convincing them that he cares deeply about the issues. They care deeply about and understands its importance to them. Whereas Hillary Clinton, people talk about Hillary Clinton being scripted, being poll tested. That is another way of saying that Hillary Clinton is good at figuring out what people want to hear her say and then sing. And, that is an advantage in elections. And, I think she is much better at that than Bernie Sanders is, and I think that is something that is going to be an advantage to her over time. I think these polls reflect a certain dissatisfaction with the Clinton dynasty. I think they reflect a desire to have a more left wing or at least stylistically left wing campaign in the democratic party. But, I think ultimately, Hillary is just better with the blocking and tackling of campaigns and just still be overwhelming favor to win. O`DONNELL: And, Anne Gearan, is not it also just simply a reflection that Hillary Clinton has a lot more experience talking to audiences nationally, talking to audiences outside of Vermont? GEARAN: Yes. Sure. I mean, Hillary Clinton has handled the Black Lives Matter Phenomenon not perfectly by any measure, but certainly better, point by point, than Sanders seems to have. I mean, she has not hit any big, you know, wrong notes publicly. I mean, there is a -- this is a tough one. I mean, a national candidate wants to talk about civil rights issues generally, and certainly the tragedy in South Carolina put a lot of that at the forefront. And, yet the, what the Black Lives Matter Movement represents is something rather different. And that makes, it makes it hard. I mean that is not a traditional civil rights movement. It was not sort of -- it was not something that Hillary Clinton or anybody else, you know, had as sort of a poll tested and organized strategy ahead of time. It has come at them side long. And, I mean so far, I think she has done OK in figuring out how to calibrate her response. O`DONNELL: All right, another quick break. We are going to be back with some very good news and with more on the democratic campaign for president. (MUSIC PLAYING) (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: And now, for the good news. Tracy Morgan will return to this building to host "Saturday Night Live on October 17th. In June, Tracy Morgan appeared on the "Today" show in his first interview since the accident on the New Jersey Turnpike, in which he was severely injured. And, then he said he could not wait to make his fans laugh again. Today, he tweeted, stoked to be going home, #SNL. Up next, more on Hillary versus Bernie. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HILLARY CLINTON, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have said in the past that, you know, I used a single account for convenience. Obviously, these years later, it does not look so convenient. I never sent classified material on my e-mail, and I never received any that was marked classified. So, I am going to let whatever this inquiry is go forward. And, we will, you know, await the outcome of it. (END VIDEO CLIP) CLINTON: That was Hillary Clinton in Iowa on Saturday. Today, in a court filing from the state department, it was revealed that the Intelligence Community Reviewers looking at Hillary Clinton`s private server have flagged 305 e-mails for review. It has not yet been determined if any of those messages contained classified information. Hillary Clinton has maintained that there were no classified markings on any of her E-mails. Anne Gearan, where does this story go from here? GEARAN: That is the question that democrats are asking and supporters of Hillary Clinton are slightly worried about, because nobody really knows. I mean once you get -- there are a couple of different inquiries here. The 305 e-mail that you referred to is part of a FOIA request and that is separate from a potentially criminal operation that the investigation that the FBI is leading into whether any classified material was mishandled. She is not the target of it. But anybody who has been through any kind of political scandal machinery once or twice or many times knows that these things can go in unpredictable ways. And, so, that is actually what is most worrisome here is something hanging over her campaign going on into 2016 is nobody really knows where any of these things might lead. O`DONNELL: Josh Barrow, Tim Harkin, former Iowa Senator endorsed Hillary Clinton, said it is too late -- said the other day, it is too late for Joe Biden or anybody else to get in, this race has already locked. And, he is pretty confident that none of this stuff is going to take her out of that number one position. BARRO: We are nearing like 40 years of Clinton scandals, going all the way back to 1978 and the cattle futures. The Clintons have been embroiled in scandal longer than I have been alive. And, at this point it is background noise. Everybody is formulated on opinion about whether they think the Clintons are above border or whether they care about whether the Clinton s are above border or not. And, I cannot imagine this breaking through in a way that the previous 25 or 35 scandals did, unless she were to be indicted, which I do not think is going to happen and I have no reason to believe will happen. I do not think the campaign has any reason to believe it would happen. So, I think, you know -- certainly, I think Hillary`s perspective is, if it were not this, it would be something else. And, they think the media Trumps all of this up because it is good television and certainly republicans trump it up because they think that it can undermine the Clintons. And, there is an element of that. Although, there is always an element of, "Why did you do this thing?" "Why did you have a private e-mail server?" It starts from some little thing, and then the question is, is it big enough that people care. And, my guess is that this is something that is not big enough that people care. O`DONNELL: And Zeke, no democratic candidate -- well, certainly, Bernie Sanders is not mentioning any of this. MILLER: None of them, Martin O`Malley does not bring it up. To disagree a little bit with Josh, the difference here is unlike the cattle futures. Everyone has an email account. Now, everyone has a cell phone. Everyone understands how this things worked in a way -- O`DONNELL: I still do not know what a cattle future is. MILLER: Yes, in a way that is the most simplest -- BARRO: Nobody knows where their e-mails are, but people can totally relate to the idea of not knowing how to work your blackberry, and even though like the "I wanted one account" thing is not a great explanation. I think it is one that people find relatable. People do not like dealing with their technology. People would not know what to do about a server full of e-mail in their basement. O`DONNELL: All right, we are going to have to leave it there for tonight. Zeke Miller, Josh Barro and Anne Gearan, thank you all very much for joining me tonight. I really appreciate it. BARRO: Thanks. MILLER: Thanks. O`DONNELL: Chris Hayes is up next. END